….ID theft victimizing a 43 year old Wellsboro woman is being investigated…Theft of wallet containing cash in Wellsboro probed….Several motorists arrested for DUI… Poultry flock owners urged to step up biosecurity in response to avian flu…

Tuesday’s high, 34; Overnight low 30






An ID theft victimizing a 43 year old Wellsboro woman is being investigated by state police. The victim told troopers when she was filing her taxes, she discovered just over $18,000 was used for unemployment compensation. The victim told police she works and has never collected unemployment compensation.

Troopers at Mansfield are also investigating a tangible theft occurring February 26 on Route 49 in Osceola Township. A Vera Bradley wallet valued at $15 containing $22-30 in cash were taken from the home of a 21 year old Lawrenceville woman.

A 57 year old Kane resident is being charged with DUI/drugs in connection to a hit and run last Saturday evening in Elk County. State police allege when they investigated the collision on the Buena Vista Highway in Jones Township, they determined Charles Sherwood was responsible. He was taken to UPMC Kane for a blood draw.

A couple of Olean women are facing drug possession charges after patrol officers stopped their 2009 Chevrolet Cobalt on Route 446 in Eldred Township early Sunday morning. Troopers claim they determined the operator was driving under the influence of an alcoholic beverage and controlled substance and the passenger was found to be in possession of a controlled substance and related items. Police did not indicate which one was the driver and which one was the passenger but one is said to be 25 years old and the other, 35 years old.

DUI charges are being filed against a 29 year old Lewis Run man  whose 2011 Ford F-150XLT was stopped on North Kendall Avenue in Bradford late last Friday night for an equipment violation. Troopers did not release the suspect’s name.

Ridgway state police arrested a 46 year old Ridgway woman for DUI after stopping her 2003 GMC Yukon on Sunset Drive in Ridgway Township February 7. Police did not release her name but say the suspect did submit to chemical testing.

— The ongoing detection of highly pathogenic avian influenza in wild birds and domestic flocks in several Eastern and Midwestern states is prompting urgent calls from Penn State poultry experts for flock owners — and others who may come into proximity to flocks — to step up their biosecurity practices.

At risk is Pennsylvania’s large poultry industry, the state’s second largest agricultural sector with production valued at more than $1 billion annually. Pennsylvania is ranked fourth among states in egg production, and Lancaster County is among the top four counties nationally in sales of poultry and eggs.

As of Feb. 28, the Eurasian H5N1 strain of avian flu had been confirmed in commercial poultry flocks in Delaware, Kentucky and Indiana; in small backyard or hobby flocks in Michigan, Virginia, Maine and New York; and in about 250 wild waterfowl in nine Eastern states that, like Pennsylvania, are part of the Atlantic flyway for migratory birds.

Highly pathogenic avian influenza, often abbreviated as HPAI, is a devastating disease that kills most poultry that become infected. The natural reservoir for all avian flu viruses, including the HPAI virus of current concern, is migratory waterfowl, which often do not develop symptoms.

A 2014-15 outbreak of HPAI in the Midwest killed more than 50 million birds on commercial poultry farms, causing estimated losses of more than $1 billion. The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture estimates that a major HPAI outbreak in the Keystone State could have a total economic impact of $13 billion, including a loss of jobs and wages.

No confirmed cases of this highly pathogenic H5N1 virus have been reported in Pennsylvania to but with cases in surrounding states and in migratory birds traveling the Atlantic flyway, experts  assume that the virus is present in Pennsylvania.

That means that all flock owners — whether they have two birds or 2 million — should have biosecurity precautions in place, to officials.

— Keep your poultry away from other birds.

— Immediately clean up feed spills to avoid attracting wild birds on your premises.

— Limit visitors to only those essential for business. Make sure all visitors follow your biosecurity plan.

— Wear dedicated footwear and clothing while servicing your poultry to minimize the potential spread of the virus.

— Sanitize boots, hands and tools before entering your flock premises.

While Pennsylvania poultry owners prepare for a potential HPAI outbreak, Penn State’s Animal Diagnostic Laboratory remains vigilant in monitoring for the disease. Rapid detection and diagnosis are critical for stopping the virus’s spread.

Part of the three-lab Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostic Laboratory System, the Penn State diagnostic lab in 2021 performed more than 90,000 tests for avian flu, a 20% increase over pre-COVID numbers.

The Penn State lab has not investigated any suspected cases of HPAI in the state this year.

The extension poultry team recommends that people who are keeping birds and notice a large amount of unexplained sickness in their flock should call the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture at 717-772-2852 (option 1) for help.

More information on avian influenza, its symptoms in poultry, biosecurity recommendations and instructions for reporting suspected cases is available on the Penn State Extension website at https://extension.psu.edu/avian-influenza.

The PA Department of Health reports, there have been 43,692 Covid 19 deaths in the state to date. Deaths  in the Black Forest Broadcasting Service area  to date are mostly  holding steady.

Cameron 19

Elk 97 (+1)

McKean 138 (+1)

Potter 91

Tioga 190 (+1)

Allegany (NY) 150 (+1)

Cattaraugus(NY) 215 (+2)